Medical bulletin, not staged photos, please!

Instead of having Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go post staged photos to prove that President Rodrigo Duterte is alive, why doesn’t Malacañang release a medical bulletin on the chief executive’s health?

That should end once and for all talks about his health, which has become so unhealthy not only for him but also for the public.

The president was last seen live on TV on March 29. He missed his April 5 televised briefing.

The talks about the president’s health have become morbid as it was reported that at least 45 members of the Presidential Security Group tested positive for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and presidential spokesperson Harry Roque is in the hospital, also for COVID-19.

The report about his daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, going to Singapore for “personal health management” has added fuel to the rumors.

To prove that the president is alive, Go released on April 7, Wednesday, a picture of Duterte and him in what looks like an office, with the Philippine Star issue of that day on the table.

April 9, Friday, was Araw ng Kagitingan (Day of Valor). There was only a written message from the president. There was no video message even if his spokesperson assured that the President "remains fit and healthy for his age” at 76.

On April 10, Saturday, Go released a set of photos and a short video showing the president jogging at night. One photo showed him riding a motorbike that was, of course, stationary. There was no indication when it was taken.

The photos only fueled more speculations. Why was it taken at night? Except for the one with Duterte on a bike, the pictures of him walking and jogging, or trying to jog, were long shots. Keen observers noticed that the person jogging had no paunch. Was that a double?

We will leave the forensics of those photos to the experts.

Meanwhile, tigilan na, please! Just release a medical bulletin!

Section 12 of Art. VII of the Constitution states: "In case of serious illness of the President, the public shall be informed of the state of his health."


The views in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of VERA Files.

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